Department ‘ready for matric exams’

2010-10-19 11:34

The basic education department is ready to host this year’s matric exams, which start on October 25, the chief director of exams said today.

A total of 642 691 students would write the Grade 12 National Senior Certificate examinations, Nkosinathi Sishi told reporters in Pretoria.

The examinations start on October 25 and the last paper will be written on December 3.

There will be 198 examination papers written in 39 subjects in about 8 000 examination centres.

Candidates could expect to get their results on January 6, 2011, after more than 38 000 markers had done their work at 127 marking centres across the country.

Sishi said 75% of the markers had worked on matric exams previously. All of them had to have at least three years tertiary experience in the subject they were marking.

All nine provinces would have to declare their state of readiness for the exams by indicating how much work pupils had completed by the end of next week.

Sishi said Basic Education Minister Angie Motshekga had been assured by her provincial counterparts, at a recent council of education ministers, that the necessary “administrative systems” had been put in place to ensure the smooth running of this year’s matric exams.

He said the year had been a difficult one for schools, with the World Cup and the public sector strike, but these factors would not affect the quality of the examination process.

“Examinations are a process that evaluate the preparation of learners, and therefore it is important for that system to be seen to be operating in a manner that is independent of any variables that might undermine quality of education.

“The members of the public and stakeholders in education in South Africa and anywhere in the world can feel that our examinations do not bend over backwards and forward because there were problems in that particular year,” he said.

The standard of the examinations would be constant, and would not depend on whether the department had prepared students sufficiently.

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